Professional Development Days

Professional Development (PD) Days are offered as part of a suite of programming supporting career management and professional development for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. The sessions will help you recognize your talents, pursue your interests, learn professional skills and make interdisciplinary connections that will help you excel in your chosen field.

The next workshops will be hosted from June 13-17, 2022. For sign-up and full details, will be posted shortly. All times are in MT.

These sessions may be used towards the University of Alberta Professional Development Requirement which includes an individualized career plan document called an Individual Development Plan (IDP) and the completion of eight hours of professional development activities inspired by your career plan.

The IDP outlines seven competencies. You will find IDP competency information in the workshop descriptions to help you determine which workshop will expand your desired skill areas.

Please note:

  • Please register early for these workshops, as spots may be limited.
  • Be sure to contact your department BEFORE registering. Your department may be using other courses or workshops to meet the Professional Development Requirement.  
  • Students who are on leave are not able to use the sessions for PD credit, however are certainly permitted to attend the sessions which are open to everyone on campus.
  • In keeping with our standard practice, attendees later than 10 minutes will not be admitted to the sessions.  
  • PD credit is only given to participants who attend the entire session and participate in the activities related to the sessions.  This may include polling, a pre-activity survey, completing a google form, and so forth that can take place prior, during, or post-event.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Reflect upon and evaluate your skills and competencies in the areas of creativity, communication, confidence, scholarship, ethical responsibility, critical thinking, and collaboration
  • Reflect on your career options based on your interests, skills, and values
  • Acquire new, or enhance existing skills and competencies in areas related to professional behaviours, the workplace, and career management.

Learn more and register:

Programming, registration, and tracking is captured in campusBridge. Please check out our Guide to campusBridge: Registration and Proof of Attendance.

Digital Science Communication: Background, Barriers and Battleplans | Monday, June 13, 2022 | 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Register here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJMvduyorjIsE9We24gdwZuuyRiLNkHQyoB_

PD Credit: 2 Hours PD Credit

IDP Competencies:  Confidence, Communication, Creativity

Description: WISEST (Women in Scholarship, Engineering, Science and Technology) has been promoting diversity of genders represented in STEM since 1982.  An emerging issue is the lack of diversity in Digital Science Communication (DSC).  In this session, we will provide background as to why this is an emerging barrier, tackle some of the challenges faced when embracing this way of communicating and give strategies to improve your own digital science presence. This session aims to engage young professionals who are just beginning their journey in the STEM fields through to seasoned professionals who are looking to find new and innovative ways to increase visible diversity in STEM through social media. 

Facilitator: Helen Yip, MSc

Helen Yip is the Outreach Coordinator at WISEST (Women in Scholarship, Engineering, Science and Technology). She designs and executes community programs that effectively target underrepresented groups in hopes of creating a more inclusive STEM discipline. She also manages all of the WISEST social media channels as well as curates the monthly newsletter that helps connect students, educators and parents to STEM opportunities and resources.

Professional Development Orientation (not for PD Credit) | Monday, June 13, 2022 | 12:10 - 12:50 p.m.

Register Here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJIuf-yqpjgsGtT2dhhI7ZmNb4U6venUiWS4

PD Credit: Not for PD Credit

Description: This session introduces students to the Professional Development Requirement, including the Individual Development Plan and eight hours of professional development activities. Questions that will be addressed include: Why is professional development a requirement; how do I create my IDP; and, what counts as professional development activities for the eight-hour requirement?

Facilitator: Renee Polziehn, PhD

Dr. Renee Polziehn is the Professional Development Director for the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. Following 20+ years developing the Community Connect programming, the Graduate Teaching and Learning Program, and professional development programming for the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research and the Postdoctoral Fellows Office,  she has heard many of the challenges faced by graduate students and postdoctoral fellows as they progress through their programs and has also met with many supervisors, advisors, and employers  to understand what they are looking for from their students and fellows.

Career Flow: Optimize Engagement and Satisfaction in Work and Life | Monday, June 13, 2021 | 2:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Register Here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwrcOyvpjgoE9F6zHdEL7zvGEAMbg4xgUO9

PD Credit:  1 Hour PD Credit

IDP Competencies: Confidence; Communication; Creativity

Description: In this session you will learn about flow state — a mental state of operation where we feel our best and perform our best — and how it applies to your career. Using lessons learned from working with elite athletes and performers, Marek Komar will discuss how the same trainable conditions of focus, setting clear objectives, and having a balance between challenge and skills (among others) can be applied to finding more engagement and fulfillment in your work life.

Facilitator: Marek Komar, MMS, MSS

Marek Komar works with students, postdoctoral fellows, and alumni at the University of Alberta's Career Centre, where he is a Career Coach for the Transition to Career (T2C) program. Prior to working at the University of Alberta, Marek worked in mental performance and career coaching helping individuals enhance resilience and navigate life/career transitions. He holds a BPE degree from the U of A, a Master of Medical Science specializing in Sport Psychology from Lund University (Sweden), as well as a Master of Sport Science in Diagnostics and Intervention from Leipzig University (Germany). Marek is also a Certified Career Strategist.

Maximize Your Linkedin Potential | Tuesday, June 14, 2022 | 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.

Register Here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJIofuCqpj8oGNM9zzRUF-uIAH7PQu1rZoGC

PD Credit: 1 Hour PD Credit

IDP Competencies: Confidence; Communication; Creativity

Description: You have a LinkedIn account but aren't sure what messaging you should add to your profile. Maybe you are asking “Why should I even bother?”  What if you knew more than 90% of employers utilize LinkedIn at some stage of the hiring process? What if you could take steps now that would improve your hiring chances in the future? There are some easy actions you can take to make your profile pop out from others that may have similar qualifications to your own.  Come learn how you can improve the potential of your profile and ways to utilize your account for benefits to your career.

Facilitator: Christine Gertz, MEd, MLIS

Christine Gertz is a longtime Library and Information Specialist for the Career Centre at the University of Alberta with many years of creating a collection of resources that develop career awareness.  She also is incredibly supportive of people transitioning to the workplace and has served as a Settlement Support Mentor for the Catholic Social Services and is currently a volunteer with the Student Volunteer Campus Community.

Acing the Academic Interview | Tuesday, June 14, 2022 | 2:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Register Here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJYldu-gqjMoHtbMqwYHnpYJJChe1vrDXLjI

PD Credit: 1 Hour PD Credit

IDP Competencies: Confidence, Communication

DescriptionWhile we know the academic job market is discouraging, the trend for UofA doctoral and postdoctoral fellows to land a position in academia is about 30%.  How are UofA candidates making themselves competitive? To shed some light on what is expected from candidates, we will hear from faculty members who have been part of hiring committees, and can share some insights to what makes candidates shine.

Facilitators: Dr. Ellen Macdonald (ALES), Dr. Haifang Huang (Arts), Dr. Pierre Mertiny (Engineering)

Dr. Ellen Macdonald is the Chair of the Department of Renewable Resources in the Faculty of Agricultural, Life & Environmental Science. She has also served as an Associate Dean (Research & Graduate Studies) for ALES and an Associate Dean with FGSR. 1988 Ph.D. University of Calgary

Dr. Haifang Huang is a Professor (2021) in the Department of Economics in the Faculty of Arts.  He started in 2008 as an Assistant Professor before he was awarded his PhD in 2009 from the University of British Columbia.

Dr. Pierre Mertiny is the Associate Dean (Academic Integrity) in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Alberta.  He also served as the Associate Chair (Undergraduate Studies) in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Associate Director with the Centre of Teaching and Learning. 2004 PhD University of Alberta

Career Action: Negotiation Jitters | Wednesday, June 15, 2022 | 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.

Register Here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJctcOGorD8iG9PQAyj4gZJ4Sg2rfqNOQ8qh

PD Credit: 1 Hour

IDP Competencies:  Confidence, Communication

Description: You are getting ready for your job interview and have questions about start dates, wages, and more. What types of things can you negotiate? Who starts this process? Can you negotiate once you have the job?  Let’s test your negotiation skills!

Facilitators: Andrea Spevak, MEd and Andrews Tawiah, PhD

Andrea Spevak is the Internship Advisor for the Graduate Student Internship Program.  Since 2016 she has helped more than 700 UAlberta grad students from all disciplines find internships.  Andrea works with a variety of companies and organizations, from government to industry to not-for-profit, and has a diverse background across many sectors, including Research Manager, Entrepreneur, Program Coordinator with the Federal government, and ESL instructor. 

Dr. Andrews Tawiah has recently stepped from a Peer Educator into the role of Career Advisor for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.  He has also held the role of Senior Physiotherapist at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital in Ghana, was a Supervisor with Health Clubs Ghana and Team Lead for Corporate Wellness and Physiotherapy Services.  Andrews also volunteered with Cure Clubfoot Worldwide building connections to a global community.

Leadership in Turbulent Times: Thriving in the Post-Pandemic | Wednesday, June 15, 2022 | 1:30 - 3:00 p.m.

Register Here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJcvf-CtqD4iGdK_3tbrOQ-rOnd33H5SuTZA

PD Credit: 1.5 Hours PD Credit

IDP Competencies:  Confidence, Communication, Creativity

Description: Resilience is an attribute that many employers indicated was important to thrive during the pandemic. Given we live in a fluid and ambiguous world, resilience cannot help us grow from our existing scripts and fallback positions. Now that we are moving to a post-pandemic reality, how do we prepare, personally and professionally for a world that is unfolding and unsettled. How can we lead with boldness, courage, and an adaptive mindset? How can we create new ways of living and looking at things, reimaging what is possible?

Facilitators: Maiden Manzanal-Frank, MBA

Maiden Manzanal-Frank is an advisor, consultant, educator, Rotary Peace Fellow, writer and mentor who works at the intersection of impact, innovation, and sustainability.  She is the President/CEO of GlobalStakes Consulting, is an Adjunct Instructor for Red Deer Polytechnic, continues to be a business mentor and coach, and has worked as a Diversity Coordinator for the City of Abbotsford as well as holding the position of Regional Program Manager for the World Fair Trade Organization Asia. Since 2001, Maiden has trained thousands of managers, executives, and leaders in different spheres of business and social development. Her book, Provocateurs not Philanthropists: Turning Good Intentions into Global Impact is set for release this summer of 2022.

Project Management - Is This a Career For You? | Thursday, June 16, 2022 | 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.

Register Here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJAkcuuspzkqGdXu6rVbsB-dIiDlfEiO3i1C

PD Credit: 1 Hour PD Credit

IDP Competencies: Confidence, Communication, Critical Analysis

Description: There appear to be a large number of positions that use this title or ask for this skillset and the work seems to align with many of the skills that graduate student/postdoctoral fellow have. In this session we will explore how the  “project management” role is defined, what work experience was required, how a graduate degree helped leverage these alumni into this position, what other skills are required in this position, and more.   

Facilitators: Michelle Nicole, PhD,  Vivian (Yu) Lei, PhD, and Chuan Lu, PhD

Dr. Michelle Nicole currently holds the position of Project Manager for Alberta Health Services and also provides Project Management training for the School of Public Health.  She was a former Research Project Coordinator for Covenant Health Canada, primary instructor at the University of Alberta and has her PhD in Linguistics (University of Alberta).

Dr. Vivian (Yu) Lei is the Project Manager for the Faculty of Education and has also held this position with the Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine. Between these two positions, she also held the role of Research Coordinator with the Faculty of Medicine. Vivian has her PhD in Education (University of Alberta).

Dr. Chuan Lu has recently moved into the role of Project Manager for Orbis Group Inc.  As a recent graduate from Engineering (University of Alberta), Chuan’s previous experience include working as a Research Assistant.

Making Your Résumé Soar | Thursday, June 16, 2022 | 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.

Register Here

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJMqf-msqzwjE9SG9LwaJFD3F9gjdDdMs0Sd

PD Credit: 1 Hour

IDP Competencies: Confidence, Communication, Ethical Responsibility

Description: Great resumes feature past accomplishments in a way that employers can see you have solved similar problems, you have had successful outcomes and that you have potential to excel for them. Join this workshop to understand what can raise the profile of your resume, what are some common hiring misconceptions people have, and how you can leverage your graduate degree to create an effective resume.

Facilitators: Don Back, PhD

Dr. Don Back is a former academic (Queens University), company founder, teacher, coach, managing director of venture capital funds, researcher, project manager,and more. Through these many other roles he has developed a strong sense of what hiring managers look for in new employees.  He has sat on both sides of the table and has a keen awareness of how a graduate program builds skills beyond what is needed to complete a capstone or thesis.

So You Want to Be a Consultant/Self Employed | Friday, June 17, 2022 | 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.

Register

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJIqd--srTMiE92ucaBx1k-_cA-bT5RgU0SF

PD Credit: 1 Hour PD Credit

IDP Competencies: Confidence, Communication, Critical Analysis

Description: Have you ever heard, ″Why don't you become a consultant?″ As graduate students and postdoctoral fellows, you may be developing expertise that could make you well suited to starting your own consulting practice. There are many factors to consider in becoming a professional consultant or being self employed. In this session you will gain some key insights about running your own consulting business, what it takes to be self-employed, and some first steps to consider.

Facilitator: Noreen Hoskins, MBA/MAg

Noreen Hoskins is the co-founder of DeCom Consulting and former consulting companies Hoskno.com and Parachute Marketing & Consulting. She was also the Manager of Mergers, Acquisitions and Partnerships for TrustBIX, Executive Director of NABI, Director of eHUB, partner of Radar Endeavor Group Inc, Chief Engagement Officer/VP Business Development for Zayfti and Business Development Advisor for Community Futures Centre West.

Making Space for the Things That Matter to You | Friday, June 17, 2022 | 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.

 Register

Zoom Registration: https://ualberta-ca.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJYlduuvpj8iGtUaSbezTNbNC62s-Iha-mnl

PD Credit: 1 Hour PD Credit

IDP Competencies: Confidence, Communication, Creativity, Ethicial Responisbility

Description: June - a perfect month to check on your overall well-being.  In this session, you will take a step back and examine your career trajectory from a holistic perspective. We will share a practical tool to assess where you are focussing your energy and help identify how to better balance your life. You will leave with a greater understanding of your interests and hidden strengths, and how you might incorporate more of these aspects into your daily life.

Facilitators: Andrea Spevak, MEd and Navita Kalra

Andrea Spevak is the Internship Advisor for the Graduate Student Internship Program.  Since 2016 she has helped more than 700 UAlberta grad students from all disciplines find internships.  Andrea works with a variety of companies and organizations, from government to industry to not-for-profit, and has a diverse background across many sectors, including Research Manager, Entrepreneur, Program Coordinator with the Federal government, and ESL instructor. 

Navita Kalra is the Career Advisor for the Graduate Student Internship Program. She has supported students from all disciplines in finding work experience opportunities since joining the Career Centre in 2016. As Career Advisor, Navita helps graduate students with their internship applications and interviews – including assisting them in creating their own internships.

Career Ed | Rapid Resume/CV and LinkedIn Profile Reviews | June 22, 2022 | 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Description: The Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research and the U of A Career Centre have partnered to bring an exclusive LinkedIn/CV/Rapid Resume Review session for graduate students and postdocs registered in PD Days!  You can register for a 15 minute session with the Career Centre for a review of your resume, CV, or LinkedIn profile. You will be sharing this information through the screen sharing feature in Google Meet.  Limited space.

How to Register: 

  • Use the campusBridge navigation bar on the left-hand side and go to: Career Centre Appointments.  
  • Click on Book by Appointment Type to find the relevant appointment. Set your filter on far right to be for Rapid Resume with Career Advisors 1, 2, and 3. 
  • Click Book under the appointment type.   
  • Select a time and date and complete the intake form and click Book Appointment 

Note: You may also watch this short instructional video on how to book a Rapid Review through campusBRIDGE or check out the Career Centre webpage for more instructions on how to prepare for the event.

Visit the U of A Career Centre website for more information about the many services and programs offered to graduate students. Call the Career Centre at 780-492-4291